When Isabella first learned about the Bring Your Bible to School Day event in Focus on the Family’s Brio magazine, she thought it was a cool idea. But she didn’t really think of it as something she would do at her school.
“I was kind of afraid that kids at my school were gonna judge me or that they would make fun of me,” said the 13-year-old from Minnesota.
‘Nudging at My Heart’
But then, God started “kind of nudging at my heart,” she said.
The first little “nudge” came when the magazine with the article about it just happened to fall on the floor in her bedroom, prompting her to re-read the article — just three weeks before the event.
“I was looking at it again, and so I went on the website … and it was kind of like God was [saying], ‘Come on Bella, just do it, I just want you to do this. It’s not gonna hurt you. It’s a good thing for you.’ And so I was like, ‘Okay God, I’m gonna do this.’”
The next thing Isabella did was ask her school officials for permission to put up posters about the event in the same areas where other students had put up posters announcing other events or topics. At first, she had trouble getting a response from school officials. Then she began to worry about getting in trouble.
When they noticed her distress, Isabella’s parents took time to help her learn what her constitutional rights were by reviewing the information on the BringYourBible.org website (see the “Know Your Rights” section) that explained students should have the right to put up posters announcing the event, especially if the school has already made that forum available for other students to use for promoting other events.
‘A Cool Sense of Pride’
“That really helped encourage me, just knowing that my parents are always behind me, no matter what as long as I’m doing it for God and the right reasons,” she said.
So she persisted in her equal-access right to put up the posters. And one day, when Isabella got to school in the morning, she was greeted with an encouraging update from her principal: “He said, ‘By the way, when you go into lunch today, your poster’s gonna be up there.’”
Isabella also told friends about it on her bus and made an announcement at her church. “I asked my youth pastor, ’cause we have this little stage in our youth group … so I went up there and told everybody what it was about and I told them that on the day of Bring Your Bible to School Day, before school started, we could all go around the flagpole and pray.”
On the morning of the event, Isabella led her classmates in a voluntary prayer. “It was a really cool experience because all of us were holding hands and just praying and giving the glory to God.”
‘God Isn’t Just for Us’
About 20 classmates also joined her in bringing their Bibles into the school building and reading them during free time. “This is a new thing for me because, at our school, it’s not normal to see kids praying or doing that type of stuff — people keep it to themselves if they do pray. So this is a very public thing for us to do.”
As a result, she said, “I feel like a lot more people were more open to us just having our Bibles there, just having prayer.”
It’s also opened up a chance for Isabella to have more conversations with her friends and invite them to church with her. “I think a lot of people just think that Christians hide out and we just are all enclosed and just keep the Bible to ourselves, but that’s not true. We need to share the Bible with everyone because God isn’t just for us — He needs to be shared.”
**“Originally published on BringYourBible.org